We’re back, round two of our Fall TV preview, next up ABC. While they have had some success with their comedies recently, they are still looking for another Greys or Lost, and they have tried using the same formula over the past seasons in hopes to capture the same magic and it has not worked. After watching what they have on tap for this season, I do not think they are even close.
Although on a side note, the more TV trailers and promos I watch, the harder I realize it must be to put together a quality TV trailer. You do not want to give too much away and a majority of the footage is most likely taken from the budget pilot episode, which makes me think that most dramas would not look great. However, if a sitcom can’t make me laugh in a 2 min long trailer, it’s pretty much hopeless. Gonna make this interesting and see if I can come up with the Log lines that were used when each of these were pitched to ABC.
The Neighbors – Modern Family with “Subgatory chic” moves into a neighborhood full of peaceful aliens.
Hey, it worked for Third Rock from the Sun and Coneheads, although they made the incredible smart decision of NEVER showing the actually alien form. The Neighbors looks to make that mistake. Look, no matter how good you think your CGI is, it’s still TV CGI and looks like shit. Guaranteed. I am sorry, but the aliens look stupid and corny as hell. They could have made a funny fish out of water comedy and NEVER had to show what they looked like. They didn’t need to physically show the aliens, people are smart enough to pick up on it through the strange behavior and actions of the characters, like oozing green slime from their ears as a form of crying. Bottom line, we don’t need to see them!!
McNasty’s Take: ET fucked a gremlin and their bastard race has invaded my Wednesday night, Where’s my Happy Endings????
Actual Logline: Centers on a family (Lenny Venito, Jami Gertz, Isabella Camp, Clara Mamet, Max Charles) that moves into a coveted New Jersey gated community only to discover that the entire neighborhood is comprised of aliens disguised as humans.
Nashville – Aging Country Music star must deal with Carrie Underwood / Britney Spears crossover act as she tries to save her career and family.
Nashville is nothing more than a night time soap. Maybe they are hoping for the good old days of Dallas and Falcon Crest, but I do not see this one lasting. Hayden Pantierre plays the bitchy pop sensation who is clearly a slut…. Insert EVERY tired music cliche in the book and you have this series: scheming manager, power hungry parental figure, sleazy music executive, ex-band mate/ex-lover, talented nobody with a killer voice…I could go on and on, but they are ALL there. Destined to be on CMT in a season, maybe mid-season.
McNasty’s Take: ARRRGGGGGGGGGG. First Glee, then Smash, fucking musical shows are all the rage right now, too bad they are either too poppy to be good, or not grimy and realistic enough to be entertaining.
Actual Logline: A family soap set against the backdrop of the Nashville music scene revolving around one star at her peak (Connie Britton) and another on the rise (Hayden Panettiere).
Authors Note: This weekend I was thinking, man you would really like to watch a Submarine show weekly. Although my idea would be either to follow the 40 to 50 day deployment of a US sub during World War II, in which the season would spend 4 to 5 episodes on the sub and the 2 on dry land to add other elements of the show and to humanize the characters. Or I would follow the crew of an attack submarine during the third world war with China and the Middle East. So needless to say I was excited when I started to watch the trailer
Last Resort – Using a nuclear submarine, the crew takes over a small island after they did not fire their nuclear weapons on Pakistan.
So my submarine show turns into a geo-political nuclear armed Gilligan’s Island? I have a feeling a majority of the show will be set on the damn island, with very little sub action. Also, the crazy Dictator angle of the Ship’s captain will be completely played out beyond belief. However, I will still watch at least one show.
McNasty’s Take: Nuclear holocaust on tap every week? Its the sixties all over again. Is Andre crazy or just really going all Jimmy Buffett and wants to own his own island…
Actual Logline: Centers on the crew of a U.S. nuclear submarine (led by Andre Braugher) who, after ignoring an order to fire nuclear missiles, wind up being hunted and escape to a NATO outpost where they declare themselves to be the world’s smallest nuclear nation.
Malibu County – because the CW was just not big enough for her.
I am just speechless. It looks terrible. I think there is no way a Fish out of water tail with Reba McIntrye in what looks like a remodeled version of Charlie Harper’s Malibu house should EVER be on ABC. Seriously, just painful, they even had the nerve to throw in the Grandmother getting high on weed lollipops.
McNasty’s Takes: Reba in Malibu I CAN NOT WAIT TO SEE her in a Bikini… … cue vomiting.
Actual Logline: After her “good ‘ol boy” rock star husband cheats on her and burns through most of their money, Reba (Reba McEntire) divorces him and moves her three kids and mom (Lily Tomlin) from Nashville to the only asset they have left — a little house in Malibu. There she’ll try to reignite her own singing career and keep herself and her kids from being corrupted by the materialistic and rarified Malibu world she now calls home.
I am going to ask you to be the studio executive for a moment here. I am going to give you 5 lowlines and you need to fill an hour of comedy programming (a complicated way to say pick 2). Which 2 do you pick? (all of these were pitched and made into pilots)
A.) A cosmopolitan woman (Judy Greer) gets married, becomes a fish out of water in the suburbs having to juggle stepkids, her mother-in-law (Mimi Kennedy) and the ex-wife of her husband (Elaine Hendrix), who also happens to be the town sheriff.
B.) Based on the British format, revolves around a man (Kyle Bornheimer) who is forced to put his dreams on hold in order to take over the family handyman business from his father (J.K. Simmons).
C.) Polly (Sarah Chalke), a recently divorced single mom, moves in with her eccentric parents, Elaine (Elizabeth Perkins) and Max (Brad Garrett), a couple who are full of life but know no bounds.
D.) Neil (Kal Penn), an uncool cubicle worker (“prairie dog”) at one of the coolest companies in the world, is the victim of identity theft. When he discovers that the thief has created a much more fulfilling, kick-ass life with his identity than he ever has, he engages the charismatic con man (Nick Zano) to help him change his life.
E:) A brilliant and successful woman (Portia de Rossi) begrudgingly goes to work for her less-brainy but more popular sister (Malin Akerman) — a former beauty queen, weather girl and now big-city mayor.
So…Everyone picked B & C right? Thought so…Enjoy Family Tools and How to Live with your Parents for the Rest of Your Life.
Although, I can safely say I am extremely happy that none of these were selected.
Newlyweds Annie (Mandy Moore) and Ben (Nelson Franklin) get the opportunity of a lifetime to run a hip new restaurant in Annie’s hometown, bringing her closer to her needy and high-maintenance family. (Because I hate Mandy Moore, although it would have been nice to see her completely bomb out on TV as well)
Hilary Pfeiffer-Dunne (Mary McCormack), a high-powered executive who has dominated corporate America for years, faces the biggest challenge of her life when she finds herself unemployed and acting as full-time mom to her two teenagers. (See right about now the others don’t’ sound as bad…)
Based on the British format, the comedy chronicles the misadventures of two streetwise brothers, John Leguizamo, Dustin Ybarra) and their aging grandfather (Christopher Lloyd) as they concoct outrageous, morally questionable get-rich-quick schemes in their quest to become millionaires. (Half of me actually wanted to see this show…Because I think the people involved are hilarious.)
Revolves around the lives of four young professionals who work and live together in New York. Rappaport stars as Dusty, a twentysomething guy who, following a break-up, moves in with his co-worker. (wait…this is every other sitcom, ever…)
On to TV executive Drama Edition! You have one spot left, a decent Sunday night spot at 10. Have to hope HBO is in re-runs or still in their funk, but if the show is good, you might have something. It will have a decent trashy lead-in from Revenge. So, which one are you going to pull the trigger on?
A.) A soap revolving around a legendary fashion designer (Anthony LaPaglia) and his family business.
B.) When a young couple (Dave Annabele, Rachael Taylor) accepts an offer to manage one of the most historic apartment buildings in New York City, they unwittingly begin to experience supernatural occurrences, which complicate and endanger the lives of everyone in the building. Based on the book by Gabriella Pierce.
C.) A fantasy reimagining of the classic fairy tale set in a mythical, dangerous world where a beautiful and tough princess (Ruth Bradley) discovers an unlikely connection with a mysterious beast (Darius Campbell).
D.) Based on the Mexican format, this soap follows four maids (Ana Ortiz, Judy Reyes, Dania Ramirez and Roselyn Sanchez) with ambitions and dreams of their own while they work for the rich and famous in Beverly Hills.
E.) Revolves around the opening of the first luxury hotel in New York in 1895 and the intermingling of love, treachery and disdain between the classes set against a backdrop of vicious family rivalries, scandalous secrets and conflict and co-mingling of the classes.
F.) After pursuing a seemingly unsolvable case, Detective Annie Travers (Megan Ketch) discovers a magical world that exists within New York City. A world that goes unseen by normal humans takes all of the familiar N.Y. landmarks and reinvents them in a magical, otherworldly manner.
G.) An astrophysics grad student (Max Thieriot) in NYC learns that he is the chosen one to destroy the forces of evil.
H.) A bizarre twist of fate pulls a man (Anthony Edwards) who’s spent 20 years as the editor of a skeptics magazine into one of the most compelling conspiracies in human history
I.) Based on the Judith Krantz novel, the sexy soap is set in the late 1970s and follows a socialite (Claire Forlani) who, after her husband’s death, seeks to open a fashion-forward boutique in the heart of Beverly Hills.
Bonus points if you can pick the other show that got scooped up as a mid-season replacement!!!
Honestly 666 Park Ave does not look that terrible (it was B) and if they are able to get the creepiness of American Horror Story and add some non incest rubber suit wearing steaminess, they might have a hit.
Oh, and the “H” is Zero Hour, coming mid-season, which seems like a watered down DaVinci Code, with elements of a plague or some supernatural terror that will be unleashed on the world.
McNasty: Forgive me I passed out with all this drivel…Bring on my network!! CBS, for us old bastards…